Whenever I lecture or teach on the road, quilters ask me what sewing machine I use. Until about a year ago, the answer was easy. I had been sewing with the same brand for almost thirty years, first with a mechanical model and then with a mid-level computerized model. I developed a relationship with the manufacturer and even filmed a webisode for one of their websites. I loved those machines, and so I never really compared brands.
A few years ago, I started teaching at my local quilt shop, The Quilt Patch, also known as Bernina of Northern Virginia. Each time I carried my non-Bernina sewing machine into the shop to teach a class, I was faced with a classroom of mostly Berninas. I started to learn about Berninas and I started to covet those Berninas. When the 830 came out (followed closely by the promise of a more affordable 820 without embroidery capabilities), I started to seriously consider converting. Last year in Houston, I visited the Bernina booth and had wonderful discussions with the Bernina professionals. I played with an 830 and learned more about the upcoming 820. That was the moment when I drank the Bernina Kool-Aid.
Fast forward about a year: My, how things have changed!
I am now the proud owner of a Bernina 820. I try to put in a few miles every day so that I can learn all about its capabilities. I can’t wait to take the mastery classes!
I am also the new Bernina manager at the Quilt Patch. I’m learning all about Bernina machines as quickly as I can. I go to work full of anticipation and I come home full of new information. There’s so much to learn!
And if this weren’t enough, here’s one more announcement: Bernina has accepted me into their National Artisans Program! A brand new Artista 730E arrived at my door yesterday. I get to play with that machine for a year, during which I will produce a few products for Bernina and I will put the machine through its paces. I’m really looking forward to playing with the embroidery module.
What a difference a year makes. In future posts, I’ll share what I’m learning about my Berninas. Right now, I have some sewing to do!